For Men & Women
As April is the month of creating A Balanced Life, in this article let’s look out how we can create a balance between husband and wife and everything else that can often ‘get in the way’ of a loving, respectful, and romantic relationship.
In order to have a loving, tender marriage it is important that you have your roles defined in your marriage. In order for there to be tenderness and intimacy in a marriage, it is important that both husband and wife both do their bit (or lot, as I like to call it). Are your roles traditional, in the sense that the husband is the sole bread-winner and the wife stays-at-home? In this case, it makes sense that the wife does the cooking, cleaning and shopping etc – if she’s healthy and mobile. If the wife is the sole breadwinner and the husband stays-at-home, then the opposite makes sense, right? If both husband and wife work, then it’s wise for them to both help in the home. If the wife homeschool her children then she most probably will need help in the home. Creating a balance that works for you as a couple is essential to cultivate affection and tranquillity.
Ensure that you and your spouse have regular time together. Carve out time from your busy lives to sit together, have tea, snacks, alone time. Teach your kids to keep themselves busy when you are having time-out together. Go out for dates regularly – it doesn’t have to be an expensive meal, you could go out for a coffee or just some starters, or even a takeaway. It doesn’t even have to involve food – you could go out for a walk in the evening or walk to the park on weekend mornings.
For your marriage to thrive, it is essential to establish you and your spouse’s roots. If you live with in-laws or they play a big part in your life, ensure that you spend time in each other’s company, planning how the both of you wish to do things as a unit. This is even more important if you have children. How will you educate your children? What sort of upbringing do you want them to have? Which schools do you want them to attend (if any)? As with children, take some time out where you and your spouse can be together. Although it may be nice to be one-big-family, it’s essential to have time to yourselves, too.
Life is busy. Everyone has their to-do lists and deadlines, yet as a husband and wife, ensure you take some time out of the busyness to be with one another. If you cant fit in alone-time, work out which areas you can cut back on to have some sort of regular connection, and mark it in your calendars!
If you arent doing any self-care, chances are you will be too tired to want to spend any quality time with your spouse. Are you resting sufficiently? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you focusing on what is important in your life or are you just needing to the home/kids/work to the point of exhaustion? Try to ensure your self-care cup is sufficiently full so that spending time with your spouse doesn’t seem like a chore in itself!
You do you
For love and romance to flourish make sure you have ‘spaces in your togetherness’ – paradoxically, when you try to do everything together with your spouse, you end getting tired of each other’s company! Ensure that you do things to unwind that are separate to the time you spend with your spouse. Exercise, attend spiritual gatherings that uplift you (you may not like the same sort of thing, and that’s okay!), focus on your soul and see what enriches it. One of you may like watching certain tv shows, which the other may like to read, DIY, or cycle for pleasure. And it’s all good, it adds the depth of your relationship.
Let there be spaces in your togetherness.
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of the lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.
May Allah give you the ability to create a beautiful balance in your marriage!